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Old 14-01-2021, 11:28   #1
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Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

We've chartered a few times now but are looking for any wisdom on the best way to split expenses while on the charter. It's obviously easy to split the cost of the boat beforehand since the whole balance is usually due before you begin, but during and after the charter can be time consuming.

With smaller groups of really close friends we've just tried to cover provisioning and dinners in rotation or evenly without really accounting directly. Last time in a bigger group to Croatia, we had everyone save receipts and I tried to record those without on a Google Sheet, then afterwards I added them up to figure out how to get everyone split evenly for all of the shared expenses, and people were on their own for things that were clearly just theirs.

We just booked another charter for May/June to Grenada and are considering going a step further this time and designating one person to pay for all of the group expenses on a particular card for easier tracking (similar to using a business card for business expenses), and everyone just transfer that person $ at the end. Cash only payments obviously become an issue this way and need receipts/recording, but I guess we could ask that person to do that too (since they will get the miles/points/cashback on their card where CC is accepted in exchange for the work of doing this).

Any tips/tricks you all suggest to make this easier? Thanks!
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Old 14-01-2021, 12:30   #2
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

We have a boat kitty, Every one puts in XXX amount. This Kitty is used to pay for all group expenses. If there is any left over it is the divided equally.
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Old 14-01-2021, 13:34   #3
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

For a similar event recently we used an App called Tricount.

Each person has a copy on their phone and when spending for the group records the expense.
Tricount keeps account of a running balance for each person, plus a few other good features.

Worked a treat for our group.
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Old 14-01-2021, 14:08   #4
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gudgeon View Post
We have a boat kitty, Every one puts in XXX amount. This Kitty is used to pay for all group expenses. If there is any left over it is the divided equally.
We have done similar when travelling with friends. We all put equally into the "wallet" and one trusted person uses the wallet to pay for everything shared. Individual purchases (souvenirs ect) are still bought individually.
He also accounted for everything spent at the end with a spreadsheet, that's kinda why we appointed him
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Old 14-01-2021, 15:44   #5
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Agree with others above, you can either collect money beforehand and make 1 person responsible to spend from that collection or use an app like Splitwise (donít have experience with Tricount) in which every group expense can be entered by multiple people for a particular trip and the app will divide the expense equally, you then pay or receive based on the final tally - itís pretty easy actually, we love it.
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Old 14-01-2021, 15:50   #6
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

One way:
Operate it like a business petty cash box.
Everyone throws in an agreed amount initially.
When someone pays for something they annotate the receipt if necessary, put it in the box and take out the cash to re-imburse themselves.



When the cash gets low, everyone puts in again.
Over to you who is responsible for monitoring and reconciling the kitty.
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Old 14-01-2021, 16:05   #7
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gudgeon View Post
We have a boat kitty, Every one puts in XXX amount. This Kitty is used to pay for all group expenses. If there is any left over it is the divided equally.
This is the way.
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Old 15-01-2021, 10:12   #8
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gudgeon View Post
We have a boat kitty, Every one puts in XXX amount. This Kitty is used to pay for all group expenses. If there is any left over it is the divided equally.
My practice
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Old 15-01-2021, 10:15   #9
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Having done over 30 group charters we have perfected a formula. For starters we split the cost of the boat including charter fee, fuel, insurance. Then we kick in an extra $150 per crew for food and incidentals (mooring fees, park fees, landing fees). Everyone is on their own for alcohol as some don't drink and others drink like a fish. One person is designated as the purser and all members give him/her their $150 per week kitty. If we run out of funds before the end of the trip the purser ask for another $20 per head. I have found that $150 each usually covers the provisioning with some remaining at the end (better to have some to give back than ask for more half way through the cruise). At the end of the cruise the purser divides the remaining kitty and gives back that amount to the crew. We rotate cooking dinner and let everyone make their own breakfast and lunch. I never want to be the purser. I try to let the person with best math or accounting skills take this job. I also designate another person as the chief provisioner. We let this person know in advance what we will need for the meals we will be cooking on board. It is always best to provision yourself rather than let the charter company do it for you. It usually only takes an hour at the grocery store near the marina to do a complete provisioning and costs about half what the charter company would charge. You will also find several items that may have been forgotten or overlooked when you made your master provisioning list. Keep in mind a well fed crew is a happy crew.
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Old 15-01-2021, 10:50   #10
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gudgeon View Post
We have a boat kitty, Every one puts in XXX amount. This Kitty is used to pay for all group expenses. If there is any left over it is the divided equally.
Exactly.
One of the group (the one who objects the least...) is nominatef as the charter CFO.
Everybody puts equal sum into his purse. In cash.
Charter initial cost covered beforehand, equally.
Now, while sailing, all common costs paid by the CFO (marinas, fuel, water, groceries, whatever)
Also meals, if all go together. This may be touchy if somebody exaggerates and orders extraordinary cost dishes. Would not happen between people we want to sail with. If happens - it would not happen again as they would not be invited next year...
All private expenses paid individually.
If we split for a meal - pay separately.
If damage need to be paid - common cost, never minding who was responsible, unless really very gross negligence.
Once again, if really gross negligence happened - that person will be banned for the future.
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Old 15-01-2021, 11:13   #11
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

I think everyone is trying to come up with a fair system. Wanted to share that we had a designated accountant to make it fair. Coming into home port, she was reconciling common expenses with who paid for them when a gust took all the paper out of the cockpit. We all remain friends and laugh about it.
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Old 15-01-2021, 11:36   #12
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Quote:
Originally Posted by glocklt4 View Post
We've chartered a few times now but are looking for any wisdom on the best way to split expenses while on the charter. It's obviously easy to split the cost of the boat beforehand since the whole balance is usually due before you begin, but during and after the charter can be time consuming.

With smaller groups of really close friends we've just tried to cover provisioning and dinners in rotation or evenly without really accounting directly. Last time in a bigger group to Croatia, we had everyone save receipts and I tried to record those without on a Google Sheet, then afterwards I added them up to figure out how to get everyone split evenly for all of the shared expenses, and people were on their own for things that were clearly just theirs.

We just booked another charter for May/June to Grenada and are considering going a step further this time and designating one person to pay for all of the group expenses on a particular card for easier tracking (similar to using a business card for business expenses), and everyone just transfer that person $ at the end. Cash only payments obviously become an issue this way and need receipts/recording, but I guess we could ask that person to do that too (since they will get the miles/points/cashback on their card where CC is accepted in exchange for the work of doing this).

Any tips/tricks you all suggest to make this easier? Thanks!
Try this: each person puts, say, $300 CASH in a envelope. Use that for all expenses regarding provisioning, fuel, slip/mooring fees, etc. - everything at or on the boat. When the money is gone, put in some more, equally between all onboard.
If there is money left over at the end of the cruise, (haha) split that up equally.
'Provisioning' to us mostly means food and alcohol.
ALL entertainment ashore, including meals, drinks, showers at the marina, excursions and the like would be paid for individually.
This is supposed to be fun and relaxing, right? Don't sweat the small stuff. My wife and I don't drink (alcohol) but we still contribute equally to provisioning the boat...including beer, wine, & booze. It's not that much, and it keeps things so much simpler!
If certain folks come up with stuff like, "We don't drink. We don't wanna pay for beer." or, "We don't use paper towels", etc., we're not above shaming them into doing the right thing and all contributing equally.
We've used the envelope with cash method several times with very good results. Best of luck!
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Old 15-01-2021, 17:17   #13
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

We use a kitty system for cash items and designate a purser to whom we give credit card purchases, which are typically for eating out and split equally. The only glitch is if someone is a teetoller because alcohol can get expensive. We had one and just asked her to use her best judgment on how much to discount the expenses. No one raised any questions.
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Old 15-01-2021, 17:23   #14
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

This reminds me of a Tahiti charter in the '80s. One day we were having a pizza in Moorea and one of crew suggested he shouldn't have to pay because he didn't drink any beer on the trip. The rest of the crew shunned him for the rest of the trip.
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Old 15-01-2021, 19:07   #15
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Re: Recommendations for splitting expenses on charter

Really, there's no perfect method. Besides alcohol, you still of non-alcoholic drinks (some people drink more cokes than water, for example), you have "snacks" (some eat more snacks than others), you have dinner (some eat more lasagna than others), and on and on and on.

Definitely separate out alcohol, regardless if you think everyone will drink the same amount. It's not cheap and you don't want bad feelings at the because one person drank a case of Carib more than everyone else.

Separate out all shore based meals even if everyone ate together (remember pre-Covid?).

Have a kitty pre-sail for the fuel, moorings, slips, etc. It's just easier to have a kitty where everyone puts in equally at the beginning and as you go, than it is to charge it on a card and balance it out in the end.

Needless to say, all fee-based activities are on your own also.

Snacks and soft drinks/water and other miscellaneous expenses are very difficult to "pay as you go" and really have to be evenly shared. Yes, someone will drink a little more soft drinks than someone else, or eat more M&Ms than someone else, but you don't want snacks and soft drinks stored in cabins if possible

Have a great time!.
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